New £1m funding for woodland creation and management near HS2

The first £1 million of a new fund to create new native woodlands and restore existing ancient woodland sites along the HS2 corridor opens for applications in January.

Image: Tom Butler (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Image: Tom Butler (CC BY-ND 2.0)

The HS2 Woodland Fund is being managed by the Forestry Commission on behalf of HS2 Ltd, the developer of the High Speed Two rail line between London and Birmingham and beyond.

It is encouraging applications from landowners located up to 25 miles (40km) from the phase one route, which passes through parts of Greater London, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Northamptonshire and Warwickshire, as well as the wider West Midlands.

HS2 is already committed to creating a network of new wildlife habitats along the route, including planting around 7 million new trees and shrubs on the first phase of the railway.

Transport minister Paul Maynard said: "HS2 is more environmentally responsible than any other major infrastructure project in UK history and this fund will mean more trees can be planted and wildlife habitats created, leaving a lasting legacy which will benefit future generations for many years to come."

HS2 environment director Peter Miller added: "We’re keen to go beyond the immediate boundaries of the railway and improve the wider natural environment, in partnership with local people."

Eligible landowners are being encouraged to discuss potential applications with the Forestry Commission.

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